Shipping companies charge for the weight and size of the box. Therefore, the packing material should be as light weight as possible and the box should be an appropriate size for the item. The most popular are bubble wrap and polystyrene “peanuts”. Items shipped directly from the factory or retailer are usually packed in polystyrene moulds to protect the item. The box is usually lightweight yet strong enough to handle the rigors of shipment.
How the shipping carton is packed can be crucial to successfully shipping the item. Using proper shipping techniques and tools will ensure that the item will arrive safely without damage. Corrugated boxes work best and most shipping experts advise against using non-corrugated containers. Non-corrugated boxes do not have the tensile strength to properly protect and enclose the item.
Corrugated boxes are rated according to the amount of weight that can be safely shipped. For example: If the item weighs 125 lbs then the tensile strength of the box should be at least 150 lbs. A box rated for a 100 lb item will not be sturdy enough for shipment. For extremely heavy items a double walled corrugated box will be needed.
If the box has been flattened it will need to be reassembled using packing tape or staples. Shipping staples are usually heavy duty 1 1/4 inches wide. It is a good idea to use tape with the staples. If the item is very heavy use several overlapping layers of the tape to seal both the top and bottom of the box.
Paper or bubble wrap are both inexpensive and should be used to wrap delicate items. You can fill the gaps in the box with crumpled paper. However, Styrofoam peanuts is the preferred shipping material for shipping cartons or FedEx boxes for delivery anywhere in the country.